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The term "hackathon" was first coined in the IT sector to describe a software or hardware brainstorming event. The aim is to jointly develop useful, creative and innovative ideas within a specified time. Following a test run at the IAA in Frankfurt, Continental invited contenders to step up to the line for the first official international Industry Hackathon at HANNOVER MESSE 2018. On its home turf in Hannover, the company has invited four startups from different ecosystems to come up with creative ideas and innovative solutions for the industrial environment.

"Technological innovations are the lubricating oil and fuel for making industrial companies competitive and fit for the future. Together with our almost 150 years of expertise and a fresh outside perspective, we will form and drive new ideas, from which new products or business models could arise," explains Hans-Jürgen Duensing, the Continental Executive Board member responsible for the ContiTech division. Joining forces with experts at Continental to spend three days focusing hard on the future in a dedicated startup niche at its stand are talented young people, lateral thinkers and creative minds from Hannover, Hamburg and Bucharest (Romania). Completing the quartet is a team from San Luis Potosí in Mexico, the Partner Country for this year’s HANNOVER MESSE. "We are using Hannover Messe as an ideas factory and think tank," says Christoph Seeger, who is responsible for the new Innovation and Digitalization department in the ContiTech division. The participants will form four teams to work on developing ideas for logistics and intralogistics applications with the aid of Continental’s experts in drive belts, conveyor belt systems, industrial tires and industrial hoses. During the hackathon, they will be guided through the nine different stages of a design-thinking method so they can find specific approaches for application-focused solutions. At the end of the third day, all four teams will present their ideas to a panel of judges. A live vote at the stand will determine the winning idea, which will be carried forward for further collaborative development work.